Side Note

Fun is good and the ‘Sabrina the Teenage Witch’ revival looks very fun

Are we really living in the golden age of television? Maybe? Mad Men went off the air a few years ago, but there’s still Better Call Saul and Billions and Big Little Lies and the last season of Game of Thrones. A personal favorite show at The Outline is Riverdale, the story of four hot teens who join gangs and solve murders. And now, from the Riverdale producers comes a reboot of Sabrina the Teenage Witch, which released its first teaser today.

The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, which stars Kiernan Shipka (formerly of Mad Men) in the title role, seems to draw from the Riverdale formula: Take a beloved children’s entertainment, and douse it with camp, sex, and death. It looks much closer to a season of American Horror Story than the ‘90s Melissa Joan Hart series: unsmiling teen girls in matching outfits, Satanic rituals, a creepy rendition of “Happy Birthday,” an appearance from the devil himself.

In a sense, this is much sillier than a show that used to involve an animatronic talking cat dropping sassy one-liners, and occasionally the Violent Femmes. But it’s one way of approaching the gritty reboot still popular within the industry: make it fun, and watch the fans roll in. Cole Sprouse’s robust Instagram following is proof.